Whiskey Business returns to Red Space on Friday, November 9 - Limited Tickets Available Here!

C.J. Chenier 

Tuesday, October 14, at Wilbert's.

You can't find a better bloodline in zydeco than the one posessed by C.J. Chenier. His late legendary father, Clifton, is in large part the reason the Creole folk form is a living, breathing, butt-shaking force outside of southwest Louisiana. Back in the 1950s, the senior Chenier started mixing the zydeco accordion tradition with blues and R&B sounds of the day, a method modernized and practiced by almost every present-day zydeco outfit. Recording first regionally and then for the Specialty and Chess labels, Clifton connected during the '60s with the up-and-coming folk and blues crowds by way of a release for Arhoolie Records, Louisiana Blues and Zydeco, and the Red Hot Louisiana Band went nonregional for real.

Originally looking for a career in jazz, C.J. joined the band in the late '70s, first on sax and, after his father's death in 1987, taking over on accordion. As a leader, he has recorded primarily for the Alligator label. While abounding in solid dance-crowd material, his 2001 release Step It Up! ironically shows more of a slant toward tradition than the more typical funked-up or pop-crossover zydeco discs coming out these days.

Speaking of Previews

Latest in Livewire

More by Duane Verh


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.


Staff Pick Events

  • Arnez J @ Improv Comedy Club & Restaurant

    • Fri., Nov. 16
  • Dave Attell @ Hilarities Comedy Club

    • Fri., Nov. 16
  • Cuyahoga Valley National Park Concert Series @ Happy Days Lodge

    • Fri., Nov. 16

© 2018 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 241-7550
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.

Website powered by Foundation